Prizewinner - 2020
Price from the North Cape to children in the Caribbean
Children of the Earth award for 2020 will be given at North Cape, Finnmark on June 10, where many refugee children in the the Dominician Republic will be benefited from this prize money. This year's prize amount of NOK 150,000 goes to the Norwegian organization Amigitos (Small friends), which provides humanitarian aid in the small island state of the Caribbean.
The work is conducted in a slum area where most of the residents come from neighboring Haiti. They fled to the Dominican Republic after losing everything they owned in the earthquake that claimed more than 250,000 lives and created a national disaster in 2010. Amigitos was founded in 2014 by Siv Mika Engebretsen, from Horten.
After a demanding start, she, local staff and supporters in Norway jointly established a children's school where students receive food, education and health care. Most children come from disadvantaged families affected by poverty, alcohol abuse and neglect. The motto of the organization is "care through action - all children deserve a chance in life".
In addition to the elementary school, Amigitos has in recent years built up an extensive community center where children and young people, pregnant women and the elderly receive basic needs and help to cope better in life. The organization will be expanded.
Hundreds of children from local schools are scheduled to be present when Siv Mika Engebretsen and her Amigitos staff are honored at the North Cape in June. Behind the prize is the foundation Child of the Earth, which was established on the Northern Cape by author and child friend Simon Flem Devold. This year's award is the 32nd in the series.